Are you looking for customers in the right places?

8 marketing mistakes you could be making that could easily be fixed

Being in business can be one of the biggest roller coaster rides of your life. Some people don’t make it past the first revolution. Others manage to navigate the highs, lows, tight corners and the many twists and turns.
The roller coaster undergoes continual maintenance and upgrades. If you’re not keeping an eye on these changes and upgrading as well, one day you’ll wake up and wonder where your customers are.

Is this happening to you? Are the marketing techniques you’ve been using to great effect for the last 10, 20 or more years now not working any more? Are you on the roller coaster and are experiencing more lows than highs? Or are you new to the roller coaster?

In 2015, the team at The Community Entrepreneur surveyed 160 businesses as well as worked directly with businesses to review their marketing strategies. Many of these businesses have been operating for 10 or more years and experiencing similar challenges. Most wanted to grow and thought that technology was the answer although they didn’t have the skills in-house.

Our marketing analyses looked at what they were already doing to promote their businesses, identified gaps and made recommendations for improvements. Here are 8 common marketing mistakes that we are constantly finding:

1 Poor quality websites
Today there are hundreds of plug-ins so that you too can have a site that looks as professional as the big boys without the expense. Your website is the first place people look online, so why use an out of date template that doesn’t connect with your customer?

2 Social media frenzy
You’ve got a Facebook page but are you really using it to your advantage? Facebook pages work best when you engage your audience. Too often we have seen posts that are about sell, sell, sell. If pictures paint a thousand words, then why are you not using them to your best advantage? Engage with your prospects.

3 Not connecting your on-line media tools to each other
Where possible, drive potential buyers from social media to your website or landing page, otherwise it’s a lost opportunity. Make the most of social media, not just Facebook. Optimise TripAdvisor, YouTube and Twitter feeds, to name but a few. Use the rich wealth of the online environment to connect with your prospects, establish your credibility and help them to choose you.

4 Are you selling or are they buying?
With the advent of social media, it’s not about selling, it’s about getting the customer to buy. Don’t put your main focus on the product or its features, focus on the benefits and results. Solve their problem. Let your imagination convince them that you can help them achieve the outcome they are looking for.

5 Not utilising your sales records
Make a commitment to putting details of purchasers onto a database. This information can be used to send out offers and newsletters. It’s not too much effort if it leads to repeat business and a lot cheaper than continually looking for new customers. Create mailing lists and automate them. Don’t rely on 10 years of paper invoices and diary notes.

6 Not up-selling
All too often the effort is on the one product, but if you focus on the bigger picture, it’s possible to accessories. A tailor will sell the shirt to man who buys a suit, so what can you offer to your buyers? Can you imagine your product in the customer’s living or working space? What else do they need that you can help them with? Can you up-sell your service to the next level?

7 Do you really understand your customer?
Buyer behaviour is important, so it’s vital that you understand the buyer you are looking for – their demographics, lifestyles, interests, priorities and more specifically, where they hang out. Do you have a huge show room when your customers buy online? Once you figure this out, you can focus your promotional efforts to get in front of them and make that sale.

8 Everybody needs good customer service
It’s amazing how many businesses stress the importance of good customer service and then pass the book by claiming they’re ok but the business next door could do with some training. We all hate waiting at the end of the line to an overseas call centre, but we fail to recognise our own shortcomings. If you’re not getting repeat business, it’s usually down to one of two things – lack of follow-up or a poor customer experience. Which is it with you?

The Community Entrepreneur is offering an audit of your current marketing strategy. Let us analyse what you are already doing, give you some feedback and provide you with recommendations that you can put in place now to attract more customers and increase your sales. For further information contact Malcolm on 03 5798 3345 or email us at

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